Monday, February 5th, 2012

You have got to love high pressure weather systems in the winter! We had a great week at the course and were able to mow more grass than we have all winter. We started the week mowing the tees and approaches and finished it by mowing all of the fairways. The first since December! It is great to see stripes once again.

It was also great to see such a large turn-out for the Men's Club event on Saturday. This was probably the earliest I have seen cars parked along the edge of the parking lot. The weather couldn't have been better. We had just a short frost delay in the morning and ended up with the temperature hovering around the 60 degree mark by the end of the day. I hung around after their tournament and spoke to many of the players and so many were all smiles, regardless of what they shot. There is something about the sun's warmth that will give people such a lift.

Our latest project has been edging the cart paths. It is a long and arduous task, one that I can't guarantee we will finish any time soon. I'm not sure how many miles there are, but counting both sides of the path, I'm sure it adds up to a few. It makes such a difference to the appearance of the course, just one of those little things that makes a large impact.

This weeks forecast is calling for more sunshine so if we can just keep the frost at bay, we are hoping to get the topdresser out and get some sand out on the greens.

Wildlife Update

We had lots of great bird sightings this week. We continued to see the eagle on Monday and I finally had my camera with me and managed to get a far away shot of it above the lake on six. We actually saw a pair. Between the both of them they had the geese moving all day long. I was amazed at how the geese new the eagles presents from so far away. Once the eagle took off from the tree top the geese were up and flying from across the highway.

Red Tail nest sight 
Red tail hawks have been a common occurrence at Stone Creek but we have never managed to see where they were nesting. On Wednesday Steve Pearce saw one fly into a tree off the 15th fairway carrying some nesting material and sure enough it looks like they are setting up home. The best place to view it is from the forward tee box on the 17th hole. Still not the best but you can sure get a fee for the size of it. I hope to get an opportunity to get a picture of the parents on it later this spring.

Red tail hawk with vacant Osprey platform in background

It is great to see so much raptor activity around the course. Osprey are also a common sight. We often see them diving for the bass in the ponds. If only we could get a pair to move in to the nesting platform we installed years ago. If you ask me it would make a better home sight than that cell tower off of I-205!

Beaver dam under construction

It appears we also have a pair of beavers building a den in the middle of the lake next to the eighteenth green. They are actually trying to plug up the outfall to increase the lake level. Little do they know that that lake will be dry by July. It will actually be interesting to look at the den up close once the lake is dry and inspect their building technique.

Last note, Golf Course Management magazine has published the story on the GCSAA Presidents award this month which is available to read in the digital format. I would like to thank Bill Newton for writing the story and Frank DiMarco for coming out and shooting many of the photographs. I still can't get over how such an honor this is for getting recognized. I am looking forward to receiving the award in three weeks at the Golf Industry Show and catching up with so many good friends. Click HERE to read the story.

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